Tuesday, July 1, 2014

July's Currently!

I'm joining Farley today for July's currently!!

Here's what I've been up to::

Listening- 
As I sit here typing this, I am listening and watching my 2 kids play with their grandparents (we are visiting them in Georgia at the moment!)  They are all giggling and pretending to fly airplanes in the room.  It's these special moments that I will never forget!!

Loving-
I'm almost done with my newest unit all about learning colors and color words!! It's really coming together and should be finished shortly! Be on the lookout if you need a color pack for your kinder kiddos!!

Thinking-
We fly out today to visit our friends in Kansas before returning to the UK. We have to catch 2 flights and with all of this crazy weather going on, I sure hope we make our flights! {Did I mention I'm doing this by myself with 2 kids?? Pray for me!}

Wanting-
I'd love nothing more than to pack all of my family and friends back to the UK with me. Seriously, can I fold them all up and check them in my luggage???

Needing-
Vacations never seem to last long enough. I just want more time in the day to visit friends, laugh with family and shop! Not to mention I want some extra hours to work on TpT stuff!!

4th plans-
I'll be in Kansas for the 4th of July and can't wait to shoot off fireworks, eat some great food, visit with awesome friends!! We will make memories for sure! 


Be sure to link up now if you haven't already! 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Graphs Galore!!

Happy Monday!! 

Let's talk graphs today.
Do you use graphs in your classroom? Do you use graphs for different subjects---everything from math to science to literacy? 

I love graphs for how much information they share. They can be basic or cute...either way, they paint a beautiful picture of information that is easy to see. {And I'm pretty sure kids love making them just as much as I do.} 

One of my most favorite author/singers/creators/blogger is Debbie Clement. Have you heard of her? Of course you have!! She recently created a blog post compiled of hundreds of great graphs that she's seen as she's visited schools. 

Here is her post cover picture:
Click on picture above to view her post!!

Her post is amazing and filled with tons of great ideas. Be sure to check it out if you are in need of a few great ideas to use in your classroom. 

I was so honored that she featured one of my graphs as well:
I made these graphs when we were studying our 'all about me' unit. The kids had a great time graphing their different eye colors {and it made for a great hallway display}!! 

Click here to check out my original post! 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Let's talk Pinterest!!

Have you seen this before?
Of course you have! 
{And if you haven't, tell me what rock you have been living under!}

I mean, really.... I think ALL teachers spend a good 2-3 hours of their life on here---every day during the summer! 
Oh, you don't???
 That's just me? Well dang!!

Anywho, I feel like I've been finding some great pins lately! 
Do you follow me?
I hope so!!

This is me on Pinterest:
I'd love for you to follow me if you aren't already!! 
Click here to follow me now! 

I am so proud of myself that I thought ahead and organized my board from the beginning!! I labeled all of my school related boards with 'school' first and then a description of what was on that board. I feel like I saved myself a lot of trouble down the road not having to re-organize everything!!
Here are some of my school boards:


And of course I have other boards too for food, working out, home decor, pictures, etc.
Not to mention that I am on some pretty awesome collaborative boards as well! 

So, if you need some great school ideas for specific topics, or if you just need a good dinner recipe followed by a great workout pin, come on over and take a look!

Be sure to follow me!
And I'll share the love right back and follow you too!

And don't forget, you only have a few days left to grab this awesome pack from Educents!!
For only $9.99 you get 6 great units perfect for preschool and Kindergarten classrooms!! At that price, it's like getting each unit for just over a $1.00 each!! That's a deal!!
Click the picture to check it out now!!

Have a great rest of the weekend!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Throwback Thursday: All About Buttons!

It's throwback Thursday time!!

Today, I'm bringing you a post I wrote back in September of 2012. It was all about a lesson on buttons. The kids had so much fun that day and it inspired one of my best selling products on TpT! 

Here it is::

Buttons, buttons, everywhere!!!

 
Buttons, buttons and more buttons!
 
Today for math, we sorted buttons! 
And I think the kids were rather amazed at my bucket full of buttons. 
 I think some kids didn't have a clue that there were so many different kinds of buttons. 
Of course, I had to give them a minute to explore and compare the buttons before we could get started.  Their curiosity was just killing them!!!
 
The best 'math tool' that I've found at the dollar store are veggie trays! They are just perfect for sorting buttons!!! I put the buttons in the middle and then they use the side parts for all the different sorts! They trays are the perfect size for this activity and the best part is that a class set to use (1 per table) will only cost you $5.00-$6.00!  I like cheap! :)
 
Once we started the lesson, we started talking about all the different way to sort buttons.  One child immediately came up with the idea of sorting them by their sizes. 
 
So I told the kids, go ahead and sort them into 2 groups-- big buttons and small buttons....

 
After analyzing everyone's tray, the kids put all of the buttons back in the center of the tray and we went on to the next sort.  Another child suggested that we could also sort them by their color!  Since we didn't have enough compartments to sort EVERY color, I had the kids sort them by the colors white, black, red and all other colors. 
 
They did so well with this.....
 

 
And lastly the kids suggested that we sort the buttons by how many holes they had!
Here they are....

 
And I just love this picture....it's hard to see the buttons but I love that the kids were so eager to work. Look all of their busy little hands! That's some little working minds right there!
 
We also made sure to make a list on the board of all the ways we sorted:
 
Next week, I'll be putting these buttons and a sorting tray into a math work station box. 
I know it is sure to keep the kids engaged!

Who knew that sorting little ol' buttons could be such a learning experience??
The product that it later inspired for me was this:

This was a go-to activity for my math boxes.  And of course, it always kept my kiddos engaged!!
Click here to view the specifics on TpT!

Have a great Thursday!!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Monday Made It- Oreo Cupcakes!

I'm linking up today with 4th Grade Frolics for...
This Monday Made It is not school related at all...but it sure will make your mouth water like no other!!

Today I'm showing you how I recently made Oreo cupcakes!
They were SO delicious!!!

Here it is!
First I put baking cups into the pan.
I then added Oreo's to each of the baking cups. {It will take almost an entire Oreo package for the 24 cupcake slots!}
My secret weapon were these birthday cake Oreo's! Have you ever tasted them??? They are to die for....for real! They are a little slice of heaven on earth! Check to see if you local grocer carries them!!
I then made a regular cake mix.
I crushed one whole package of birthday cake Oreo's to add in the cake batter.
I stirred it all up.
Then used an ice cream scoop to get some of the cake mix and put in on top of the Oreo in the baking cup.
Pre-bake!
They are baking away!!
Cooling down before frosting.
I frosted half with chocolate frosting...
And the other half with vanilla frosting.
This is what it looked like when cut in half! 
{My daughter and her friend couldn't wait to chow down on these!}
This is what the bottom of the cupcake looked like! 
And of course I had to taste one too!! 
{I almost forgot to get a picture before it was all gone! lol..}
And there you have it! A simple modification to regular cupcake to wow the guests at your next party!! Make sure you have plenty of hungry people to help eat them so you won't gain 20 extra pounds! 

Enjoy! :)

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Time For Preschool!

Happy Monday folks!

Do you teach preschool or have young preschool kids of your own?
If so, I'm sure you know the importance of education before kids even step through the door of their elementary school.

I find that more and more kids are coming to school already 3 steps behind their peers when it comes to knowing some basic knowledge of things like shapes, colors, letters and numbers. While I know that money can be tight for families, it just saddens my heart to see so much potential in these kids go to waste in the early years. I believe that education can taught everyday in many ways.... and often times free or very cheap--you just have to have some time, and a little creativity never hurts either!

Pinterest is always a great place to start for ideas! A quick search of "preschool activities" will lead you to thousands of great ideas like these: {click the picture for the link}
These are all quick and inexpensive activities parents and teachers could do! 

Also, don't forget to check out your local library for tons of books that are also packed with tons of great ideas too! Or, while you're at the library, check out their 'story time'. Most libraries have story times every week and sometimes will include songs, dances and crafts too!! {And they are all usually FREE!} 

Since I teach Kindergarten, I am always thinking of my kinder-babies are the beginning of the year. I always try to plan for the kids who have had 3 years of preschool and those who have never been worked with--EVER!! Differentiation is the name of the game here folks!

We always hit the basics hard at the beginning of the year---everything from colors to numbers to shapes.  I have to review, and teach, it all! With that being said, here are the two packs I created last year. They both worked wonders for my kids! They loved exploring and playing with all of the activities.  They would even ask to play them again in their spare time like indoor recess! 

This one is all about shapes....
And this one is all about colors!
For a limited time, you can buy these 2 units of mine, along with 4 other units by my friends, in a bundled pack! I have teamed up with Educents with some instant downloads for you! Loaded with great products to work with your kids the years before kindergarten!  
For a limited time it is $9.99 from Educents which is about 64% off! Six products for early literacy, math, and science with over 250 pages of materials ready for you to use!  
{My two units alone in my TpT store retail for $12.50 so by buying the bundle, you are getting a discount and getting 4 other products for FREE!}

 Click here to purchase this great bundle now!
Don't delay!! 
Grab these great products for your kiddos and be prepared when school starts!!

You can also take peek at some of the other products included in the bundle at any of the links below!